Aus vs Ind, Test 3: Gavaskar suggests new opening pair

Sunil Gavaskar suggests Mayank Agarwal should open with Rohit Sharma for third Test

He added that Shubman Gill should bat in the middle order

Sunil Gavaskar. Credit: AFP

The ongoing Border-Gavaskar Trophy has exposed two major contrasting pictures in the Indian team: An excellent bowling attack capable of demolishing any batting line-up and the persistent opening woes leading to instability in the batting order.

Prithvi Shaw went through a horrible run of form because of technical problems and was dropped for Shubman Gill in the second Test. And Mayank Agarwal's batting stance has made him vulnerable to the Aussie quicks. In such a scenario, former Indian opener Sunil Gavaskar suggested that India should change the opening combination again by bringing in Rohit Sharma in that position and keeping faith in Agarwal at the top of the order. 

Speaking with Sanjay Manjrekar on Sony Sports Network, Gavaskar said, "I would be keeping Mayank Agarwal. I know he’s not looked good but he’s a quality player. I would keep him in the side and open the batting with Rohit." 

Also, in what appears to be a bit of surprising advice, Gavaskar said that Shubman Gill, who scored 45 and 35 not out in two innings at Melbourne and looked very much at ease against the Australian bowling, should be pushed down to the middle order, preferably at number 5.

He explained, "With his approach, he (might not) be too successful at the opening position. Also, at the U19 level he was batting down the order. So, I think for Shubman Gill, number 5 would be the ideal position.”

Rohit Sharma on Wednesday joined the Indian team after completing his two-week quarantine in Sydney, bolstering the tourists who are on a high after scripting an incredible comeback in the ongoing four-match Test series against Australia. 

"We will have a chat with him to see where he is placed physically because he has been in quarantine for the last couple of weeks. We'll also see how he feels before we take the call," Shastri had said in the post-match press conference after India's win on Tuesday.

The third Test is scheduled to be played from Jan. 7.